insights - ergonomic furniture makes economic sense

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Ergonomic office furniture makes economic sense!

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  • 1. FOR A BETTER BUYING EXPERIENCEISSUE 3 COMPLIMENTS OF YOUR LOCAL OFFICE FURNITURE USA DEALERErgonomic FurnitureMakes GoodEconomic SenseIN THIS ISSUE:Learn how ergonomicfurniture can keepemployees andprofits healthy.

2. Why Ergonomics MattersWorking in an office environment isnt as risk free as you might think.While office workers might not have the same risk factors as a warehouseor job site, injuries are still common. In most cases, these injuries arepreventable and incidences of injury can be reduced just by selecting theright ergonomic furniture.WORK FACTORS THATCONTRIBUTE TO MSDSAccording to several research studies, the prob-ability of an MSD occurring is even greater whenemployees are exposed to more than one riskfactor. Specific work-related risk factors that havebeen identified as causes of MSDs are: Poor posture Excessive force Repetitive work habits Contact stress/pressure Vibrations Environment (extreme hot or cold tempera-tures, noise, etc.)While its been found that age, gender, obesityand other personal factors can contribute to thedevelopment of MSDs, its hard to deny certainworking conditions only exasperate them.CHANGES THAT CANMAKE A POSITIVE IMPACTThe most cost-effective approach to reducingMSDs is to be proactive and implement ergo-nomic solutions before problems arise.THE EFFECTS OF ERGONOMICSON THE BOTTOM LINESurprisingly, resolving ergonomic issues can beHow important is it to consider ergonomicfurniture for your office? Very. MSDs MSDS COST quite simple and inexpensive to do. Whetheryoure making a new furniture purchase, ormusculoskeletal disorders that can bedirectly tied to poor ergonomics, and BUSINESSESreassigning existing furniture, heres a fewideas to consider when it comes to:accounts for one-third of all lost workdayinjuries and illnesses. Physical manifestations 15 TO $20 BILLION$SEATINGof MSDs include a decreased range of Choose a chair with excellent lumbar supportmotion, a weakened grip, numbness,cramping and more. DOLLARSthat allows for a reclined posture of 100 to110 degrees. This will significantly decreaseShockingly, MSDs cost businesses $15ANNUALLYthe pressure put on an employees spineand lower back.to $20 billion dollars annually in workerscompensation. And thats not includingIN WORKERS Select a chair with a cushioned seat. It helpsdistribute weight evenly for greater comfortindirect costs, which could run as highthroughout the day. Be aware that low-as $45 to $60 billion dollars a year. COMPENSATION. density foam can become permanentlyINSIGHTS | ISSUE 3 3. Consider options that dont have hard edgesINPUT DEVICES where hands and arms naturally rest. They(MOUSE / TRACKBALL / TOUCH PAD) can interfere where circulation and cause Ensure the input device is placed by the side discomfort over prolonged periods. of the keyboard in a position that allows Plan workstations so employees arentemployees to keep their upper arms relaxed required to reach above the shoulder. Dontand close to the body during use. Configura- place overhead storage units behind moni-tions that allow employees to use their elbow tors. Too much of this kind of reaching places as a pivot point help prevent tendon damage. undue strain on an employees back and Select mice and trackballs that are easy to arm muscles. operate move freely and dont require usersto bend their wrist. This avoids over-stretch- MONITORS ing of the fingers and hands. Purchase monitors that have high brightness levels and dont have a noticeable flicker. Look WORKSTATION ACCESSORIES for a refresh rate between 72 Hz and 100 Hz. Make sure commonly used items are situated Ensure the top line of screens are slightlyclose to employees. Excessive reaching can below eye level when users are sitting upright.lead to back and neck injuries. This will keep employees from looking up or Place a document holder in front of, ordeformed and inadequate cushioned sup- down all day long, which can lead to neckadjacent to, the monitor to prevent neckport can cause discomfort, imbalance, and and shoulder pain. (Note: for individuals with and eye strain.hip and back fatigue. bifocals/trifocals different adjustments may Offer telephone headsets to reduce the Make sure chairs have armrests, which can be needed.)muscle strain caused by cradling a phonereduce arm fatigue and aid employees in Situate monitors 1830 inches from the user, between the neck and shoulder.getting in and out of their chair. directly in their line of sight. This will prevent Look for armrests that are padded andwont interfere with movement. You should eye strain, limit head movement and elimi- LAPTOP COMPUTERS nate neck twisting. Provide an external keyboard, mouse andalso give preference to chairs with height-adjustable armrests.monitor to those using laptops in the office. Avoid seat pans without a rounded edge. Add a docking station to minimize muscleThey can cause discomfort and fatigue after and knee strain when reconnecting underonly an hour or so. Also, verify you can adjust counter power cords and peripherals. Dock-the position of the seat pan so that the fronting stations typically contain slots for expan-of an employees knees are level and feet sion cards and connectors for peripheralcan be placed firmly on the ground. Doing devices, such as keyboards, printers andso will reduce tension on the knee and anklemonitors. Once inserted in a docking station,joints while improving circulation. the portable computer essentially becomesa desktop computer.WORK SURFACES/WORKSTATION LAYOUT Choose a flat work surface thats between2830 inches above the floor (tall enoughto accommodate chair armrests, etc.) Opt for something thats height-adjustableand attach an adjustable keyboard/mouse KEYBOARDS Place keyboards with the center of thetray if one is not included. This allows employ-ees to customize their workstation to their spacebar directly in front of the user. ThisWANT TO KNOW MORE? allows employees to keep arms straightindividual comfort preference. It also pro-For specific recommendations when typing, decreasing muscle strain andvides more room on the desktop for papers improving circulation.and files. Choose keyboards that allow users to type right for your business, call or without bending their wrists. stop by our showroom today. Try out products before making a purchase. Many ergonomic keyboards simply transferOur furniture experts will help pressure from the wrists to the shoulders and neck. you to create an environment Select keyboard trays that are height adjust- able and allow employees to tilt for better that improves both wellness wrist posture. and profitability. SOURCES: Preventative Measures for Common Musculoskeletal Disorders found in the Office Environment, Haworth Ergonomic Workstations For Computer Workstations, Haworth Cornell University Ergonomics Website (ergo.human.cornell.edu) ISSUE 3 | INSIGHTS 4. COMPLIMENTS OF YOUR LOCAL OFFICE FURNITURE USA DEALER: INSIGHTS FOR A BETTER BUYING EXPERIENCE